MONROE COUNTY, Pa. — To curb littering and protect wildlife, park officials at the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area have come up with some new measures they're hoping guests will follow.
The biggest regulation prohibits picnicking in some areas of the park to stop trash from being left behind.
Chris Barrett from the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau believes this step is needed to be taken.
"It's unfortunate that they, you know, you have to go to those types of lengths in order to ensure that our park systems are clean and beautiful for everyone to enjoy. It's unfortunate but you know the step had to be taken," said Barrett.
Park visitors at the Delaware Water Gap who wish to prepare, cook or heat food must do so at a designated picnic area,
For locals who visit the parks frequently, they say seeing trash at a place they call home is upsetting.
"I've actually seen garbage bags on the floor. I mean I keep my garbage in my car until I find a garbage pail even if there is no garbage pail where I'm going. I hate it, I hate it because it's nature, it's supposed to be clean," said Alicia Scher.
There are signs posted around parks and trails reminding visitors to pack up their trash when they leave.
The new rules were put into effect nearly a week ago, and it's just in time for the holiday weekend.
Park rangers urge those who plan on visiting the parks this holiday weekend to be responsible and plan ahead.
For a full list of the updated park regulations, click here.